Over the last six months, I've really been thinking a great deal about this device in my pocket. This endless source of convenience on one hand and a constant source of distraction on the other. My main focus over the last few months has been the amount of time I spent distracted by it, and working to establish some limits.
But last week, my focus shifted. I got a notification (again) that my information had been compromised by one of these platforms that I'm on. Of course criminals can use that information in all kinds of nasty ways. And it bothered me. And I spent several hours that evening trying to lock down anything thieves could use this information contained in this security breach to get into and mess around with. And it was more than I thought.
All is well, but it made me really look at what I'm doing online. And I've spent a couple hours every evening this week closing down accounts I don't use. I closed more than twenty accounts. Some were social media. Some retailers. Some were app related. A few I hadn't used in years. I'm down to just a handful of online apps, and services I use.
And only one social media account. One. Facebook. And I'm honestly thinking about closing that one too. What do I get from it? Is it more positive or negative? About all I do is post pictures of my dogs. And I like to keep up with what my friends are doing. But on the downside, I see a lot of garbage. I have privacy concerns. I have concerns about the honest and integrity of many of these companies and how they're using our attention, and how the information they're harvesting from our online activity is being used. But primarily, my concerns are about what kind of return I'm getting from the investment of my time.
I've decided to wait a couple weeks. Think about it. Cool off from my last brush with identify theft. But I think my online friends could probably live without the daily pictures of my dogs.
Would it be such a terrible thing to live out here in the real world like we used to? Think about that. Many people are it seems. Might not be a bad idea to do what I did, and have a look at what you've got open out there, and start pruning away at what you don't use or don't need.
~Todd E. Creason